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Frye's first-ever stand-alone store pays homage to its 19th-century beginnings: The floors are made of reclaimed barn doors, faded photos of the original Massachusetts factory line the walls and brass rings from vintage boots dangle from the ceilings.

One look at the gorgeous goods, however, proves that the shoemaker has come a long way: Originally designed for New England workmen, Frye has become an empire of stylish, urban-minded footwear and beautifully constructed leather accessories.

Exploring the Old West-inspired space (which, in addition to modern, women's shoes, showcases dapper versions for men), we fell in love with the tough-meets-trendy Harlow lace-up bootie ($248), the dainty, Maya peep-toes ($148) and the butter-soft, Reagan driver moccasins ($148).

What's more, the store boasts some seriously innovative services: An in-house artist brands kicks with your initials and, come September, local talent will be on hand to stud, paint and even tattoo your boots.

Of course, classic elements abound: Frye's signature, handcrafted Campus boots ($248) and hip, Harness shoes ($238) of 1990s fame, remain bestsellers.

As far as shoe stores go, this one's a step above the competition.

Frye, 113 Spring St. (at Mercer St.); 212-226-3793 or

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